THE restoration of the Port Welshpool Long Jetty has moved a step closer.
Deputy Premier and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan was pleased to announce last Thursday, while he was in the district, that structural assessment works at the site have been completed and the project will now move to the detailed design stage.
Mr Ryan said that detailed design plans would ensure the project was ‘shovel-ready’ when the Commonwealth was considering its next round of grants.
“Now that the assessment work is complete, Gippsland Ports is ready to commence the detailed design phase of the project which will ensure it is ready for tender as soon as all project funding is secured,” Mr Ryan said.
“The Port Welshpool Long Jetty is a wonderful historical piece of maritime infrastructure that is cherished by the Gippsland community and it is great to see the project continuing to progress.”
Mr Ryan said the Victorian Government had committed $5 million towards the restoration project, with $1 million from the South Gippsland Shire Council.
“The estimated overall $11 million cost of the restoration would require input from the Commonwealth Government and the community is hopeful that it will eventually lend support to this important regional project,” Mr Ryan said.
“A recent decision by the Gillard Government to place a hold on Regional Development Australia funding, however, has put a cloud over Federal Labor’s capacity to fund this important work.
“Fortunately, the Federal Coalition has already committed $5 million to the restoration of the iconic Victorian attraction if it wins government, and I would encourage the Gillard Government to do the same.”
Gippsland Ports will begin the detailed design phase works immediately, with the works expected to be completed in early 2013.